Today’s Headlines

  • California Waiver Request Sparks Debate Over National Emission Standards (SF Gate, LAT)
  • Visalia’s Mayor Doesn’t Want HSR to "Zoom By"; Urges CHSRA to Plan a Stop There (Fresno Bee)
  • TreeHugger Talks to Andy Kunz About Prospects for American High-Speed Rail
  • Caltrain Promises More Consistency with Its Bike Cars (Cyclelicio.us, SVBC)
  • Powell Cable Car Line Shuts Down Again; Service to Resume This Morning (SF Gate)
  • Protestors Block Fare Gates at Fruitvale BART Station (ABC7)
  • SF Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi Appointed to the California Coastal Commission (SF Gate)
  • More on LA’s New MTA Chief (LAT)
  • San Jose Officials Question Developer Money for Senior Housing Complex (Merc)
  • The Bike-Related Wisdom of Rush Limbaugh (DC Examiner via Streetsblog.net)
  • Jeffrey W. Baker

    I love the mayor of Visalia. That guy is totally psyched up about HSR! Credit him with being the only mayor in California who is visible in the press every week boosting HSR.

    That said, I do hope they get a local stop, not an express stop ūüôā Visalia is a good spot to get off and bike/hike up into Sequoia Natl Park, but it’s not exactly the big town.

  • Look at how fat Rush Limbaugh is, think about the fact that he drives everywhere and has contempt for the idea of bicycling, and you will see a major reason why America has high health-care costs.

  • Wow, if Caltrain actually sticks to its plans to schedule two bike cars on the runs it has listed at http://www.caltrain.com/bicycle_trains.html this should help quite a bit. I just ran through the numbers with the departure times for my commute (South in the morning, North at night), and while it looks like they are only making one bullet run a two-car train, many of the packed limited runs i.e. the 7:19, 8:19, 7:44 and 8:44 (AM) and Palo Alto 4:16, 5:54, etc do have two bike cars now. BOB folks: Is this an unwillingness to dedicate two bike cars to bullets or do they just not have the equipment at present?

  • Justin – so far I have taken 3 trains that were supposed to have 2 bike cars. So far, zero of them actually did.

    With respect to the Bombadier sets (bullets is a misnomer anymore as they don’t dedicate that equipment to any particular run it seems). The bike cars are all cab cars, that is why they are always at the North end of the train where the cab for the engineer is. On the gallery sets ALL the cab cars are set up as bike cars. They have to have extra cab cars in case one goes down and this is why we have 2 bike cars on some sets.

    There are 5 bomb sets, and there are 4 extra cab cars. 2 of the extra cab cars are not set up as bike cars. As such they are useless as spares – if they are the lead car then there is no bike car (though Caltrain did screw this up once and sent a no bike capacity car down the line). This showcases the recalcitrance towards bike capacity – Caltrain is willing to bet they will never have more than 2 cab cars out of commission, and if it happens then they will scramble to drop some racks in (which has a short lead time compared to ordering an extra cab car).

    In the February Meeting, Chuck Harvey was very careful with his words – he said Caltrain would add capacity with 2 more racks in each cab car, then paused and suffixed that with “That are set up as bike cars”, in order to not commit to putting racks in those 2 spares. This month, he mentioned putting racks into those cab cars so that 4 of the 5 sets would have (the now expanded) 24 slots. It’s a little unclear exactly what he said – my impression was that he said they actually wanted to do it but they need to find the money.

    To me the highlight of the meeting was an Engineer showing up and saying that when his crew gets to CEMOF and finds out they are driving a set with 2 bike cars, they know it will be an easy day. If they get a bomb with 1 bike car, it’s going to be a long hard shift.

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